News and Headlines


The Ohio Council Welcomes New Affiliate Member Anthem BCBS!

The Ohio Council welcomes Anthem BCBS in Columbus, OH as a new Affiliate member.  Lindsay Lanno, Plan Marketing Manager can be reached at [email protected], 419-260-5692.  Anthem BCBS is a Managed Care company.

The Ohio Council Welcomes New Affiliate Member Medic Management Group LLC!

The Ohio Council welcomes Medic Management Group, LLC in Beechwood, OH as a new Affiliate member.  Patricia Clay, Senior Manager can be reached at [email protected], 234-466-1041.  Medic Management Group LLC is a leader in providing business improvement solutions and support to physician practices and healthcare providers.  They ensure that their clients’ clinical business operates efficiently so they can focus on caring for their patients.

They deliver full MSO capabilities, best in class RCM results, a wide range of consulting and advisory services, and M&A support and guidance.  They bring deep knowledge and experience to every engagement and assist clients ranging from small physician practices to complex, multibillion-dollar health systems.

Their unique customized solutions improve business outcomes, clinical effectiveness, practice quality and overall patient experience.  They support each client engagement with seasoned healthcare industry professionals who have deep experience in executing and implementing recommended solutions.

Governor DeWine Announces Pediatric Behavioral Health Initiative

May 16, 2022

Dan Tierney: 614-644-0957

Breann Almos: 614-644-0957

(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—As part of Mental Health Awareness Month, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today announced the Pediatric Behavioral Health Initiative, an $84 million investment, to increase access to care and expand capacity across the state so kids and their families can get services and supports for their behavioral health needs in or near their communities.

“The need to increase access to behavioral health care has been growing nationwide for years. I am pleased that, here in Ohio, we place an emphasis on expanding treatment capacity and increasing accessibility for children and their families,” said Governor DeWine. “When children are mentally, behaviorally, and physically stable and healthy, they are more likely to do better in school, avoid potentially risky behaviors, and make sounder decisions, putting them on paths that will help them reach their full potential.”

This initiative uses dedicated ARPA investments to expand infrastructure and strengthen local partnerships so Ohio kids can get the specialty care they need. The funding was allocated in HB  168, sponsored by Rep. Mark Frazier and Rep Mike Loychick, passed by the General Assembly last year. It will expand inpatient and outpatient behavioral health supports regionally. Recipients include:

  • $7 million: Akron Children’s Hospital to help create regional behavioral health centers to provide psychiatric services, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs, and outpatient therapy. This project will increase access to behavioral health services in local communities and provide opportunities to partner with community agencies to fill gaps in services.
  • $10 million: Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center to help fund their new inpatient facility at the College Hill Campus that will feature private rooms for all their patients, a new neurobehavioral partial hospitalization program, along with a severe behavioral day treatment program, dedicated areas for therapy, and additional treatment space.
  • $25 million: Dayton Children’s Hospital to help build a new mental health building that would double inpatient treatment capacity, expand the partial hospitalization program, increase access to psychology services, and add a bridge service to ensure smooth transitions for children and their families as they transition from one level of care to another.
  • $17 million: ProMedica Russell J. Ebeid Children’s Hospital to renovate existing space in their inpatient pediatric psychiatry unit, establish an ambulatory outpatient building with comprehensive resources to better serve families, and work with local partners to develop services and programs to meet the community’s needs.
  • $15 million: University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s to renovate and expand their inpatient Children Adolescent Psychiatric Unit, creating sensory-friendly spaces, and leveraging technology to better accommodate patients.
  • $6.45 million: Appalachian Children’s Coalition: Integrated Services for Behavioral Health to expand the Youth and Family Wellness Center in Chillicothe, strengthening southeast Ohio’s Behavioral Health System of Care and reducing the need for families to travel long distances to receive specialized care. Integrated Services also expects to use the funding to help renovate the Mary Hill Center for Youth building in Nelsonville, Ohio, and fund family-friendly recovery housing.
  • $3.55 million: Appalachian Children’s Coalition: Hopewell Health Centers to renovate space in local schools in southeast Ohio to house fully integrated health centers to help meet the primary care, behavioral health, and therapeutic needs for the schools. In addition, funds will be used to renovate buildings for Hopewell Health Centers REACH Youth Partial Hospitalization Program.

Nationally, each year, one in five children experience a mental health condition. According to the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, there are currently 10 child psychiatrists per 100,000 kids and teens; however, it is estimated that nationally we need 47 child psychiatrists per 100,000. The need is growing.  Between 2020 and 2021, the number of children hospitalized for a mental health reason increased 163% nationally. 

In Dayton, where Governor DeWine joined Dayton Children’s Hospital President and CEO Debbie Feldman to announce their Pediatric Behavioral Health Initiative Project, Feldman explained that their mental and behavioral health inpatient unit opened in July 2019 with 24 beds. 

By 2029, it is expected the hospital will need 45-50 inpatient beds to meet the need. In February, 178 kids stayed in regular medical rooms at Dayton Children’s, waiting for a bed in the behavioral health unit.

The Pediatric Behavioral Health Initiative is part of a larger commitment that Governor DeWine has made to increasing access to mental health services in our state. Last week, Governor DeWine announced a Wellness Worker Initiative intended to cover many of the costs for students in behavioral health-care fields so they can complete their studies more quickly and enter the workforce to meet the growing need. Many efforts are targeted specifically at youth. Governor DeWine launched the Student Wellness and Success Funds to provide schools with wraparound resources to better address the social and emotional needs of students. To date, Student Wellness and Success funding has helped pay for more than 6,600 wellness programs, including more than 1,300 focused solely on mental health. 


Governor DeWine Awards $3.6 Million to Help Law Enforcement Combat Illegal Drug Activity

May 17, 2022

Dan Tierney: 614-644-0957

Jill Del Greco: 614-644-0957

(COLUMBUS, Ohio) -- Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today announced over $3.6 million in funding for 41 local law enforcement agencies to help their drug task forces enforce the state’s drug laws and combat illegal drug activity.

Grants from the 2022 Ohio Drug Law Enforcement Fund will support drug task forces that impact 67 counties on issues of drug trafficking, pharmaceutical diversion, and other organized criminal activity associated with the drug trade. The program, which is administered through the Office of Criminal Justice Services, is also intended to help local entities enhance the safety of Ohioans through multi-jurisdictional task forces. 

“Ohio’s drug task forces play an absolutely critical role in removing drugs from the streets and holding drug traffickers accountable,” said Governor DeWine. “These grants are flexible so drug task force commanders can tailor their plans to the greatest benefit for their local communities.”

Funds can be used by agencies to investigate drug trafficking organizations and disrupt the drug supply through intelligence gathering, information sharing, and multi-agency coordination. Grants can also be used to support local work to help drug overdose victims and their families through education, support, and treatment options. 

The Ohio Drug Law Enforcement Fund is part of the Drug Interdiction, Disruption, and Reduction Plan that is funded through Ohio's operating budget.  

Today's grants are in addition to several other initiatives developed under Governor DeWine to address the issues of drug trafficking and substance use disorder. Immediately after taking office in 2019, Governor DeWine signed an executive order creating the RecoveryOhio initiative to support aggressive measures to combat the opiate epidemic by investing in the health and well-being of Ohio citizens. Through the RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund, local drug task forces have received millions to intercept illegal drugs and enhance their role in substance use awareness, prevention, and recovery. RecoveryOhio has also worked to expand access to specialized court dockets to give judges flexibility to place defendants with mental health or substance use disorders into treatment rather than sentencing them to jail. 

Governor DeWine also created the Ohio Narcotics Intelligence Center in 2019 to support local law enforcement agencies in intelligence-focused drug trafficking investigations and secured funding for the development of several Major Drug Interdiction Task Forces that target trans-national drug trafficking cartels. The new Ohio Crime Lab Efficiency Program that Governor DeWine launched last month will also support local crime laboratories to help them efficiently analyze drugs associated with criminal investigations.
Biden Administration Set to Extend COVID-19 Emergency: How it impacts Ohio

President Biden's administration is set to extend the COVID-19 health emergency declaration beyond July 15, which is when it is currently set to expire. The extension from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services means that hundreds of thousands of Ohioans at risk of losing health coverage and other benefits will continue to keep them for now. Earlier in the year, many had anticipated that the pubic health emergency would no longer be extended as the nation settled down from the omicron wave and COVID-19 restrictions were loosened. Ending the public health emergency is more than just saying the U.S. has moved on from the COVID-19 pandemic. Its declaration allows for special provisions to help Ohioans affected by the virus and has very real-life consequences. With the extension, any vaccines or COVID-19 treatments under emergency use authorization can continue to be used. That currently includes vaccines for children between 5 and 15 years old. As of May 12, only 30% of Ohioans ages 19 and younger had been vaccinated, per state data. The extension also continues to allow for health coverage flexibilities around COVID-19 tests, treatment and the use of telehealth.

At least 400,000 Ohioans relying on Medicaid -- government-paid health insurance for low-income or disabled people -- could have lost coverage had the Public Health Emergency not been extended. Instead, that process will play out later.

(Source: Akron Beacon Journal)

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